Shoesmith sues for pay off

#1
timesonline

The children’s services chief sacked without compensation for her role in the death of Baby P could end up with a generous pay off after all.

Sharon Shoesmith, 55, will this week launch an appeal against the decision to dismiss her from the £100,000 a-year post and employment lawyers said today her case had a reasonable chance of success.

Ms Shoesmith was removed from her post as director of children’s services at Haringey Council on December 1 but she remained suspended on full pay until councillors decided she should be dismissed with no pay off a week later.

A government-commissioned report found there had been a “fundamental loss of trust and confidence” in her ability, and listed a catalogue of failures at her department.

A panel of three elected councillors will hear her internal appeal, but she will also have the right to take her case to an independent employment tribunal if she fails.

It is highly unusual for public servants to be dismissed without any pay in lieu of notice or compensation.

Ronnie Fox, principal of City employment law firm Fox, said she has two grounds for appeal.

“The first is that due process was not followed, that she was not presented properly with the accusations or given a chance to explain herself. However even if she wins on those grounds she still may not be entitled to compensation as the employer would argue that even if they had followed due process the outcome would have been the same,” Mr Fox told the Times.

“The second is that she was not guilty of gross misconduct, that it was someone else’s fault or or the facts were not as presented.”

He said the decision by Ed Balls, the Education Secretary, to say publicly that she should not be given a penny in compensation will not help the council.

“Unfortunately for the employer there appears to have been a direction from a politician, before an investigation by the employer took place,” he said.

It is thought she could be awarded up to a year’s salary in lieu of notice, as well as tens of thousands of pounds in compensation, although she may have to go to a full independent tribunal before the case is settled.

Baby P was died of his injuries in August 2007 despite being visited by Haringey social workers and other professionals on at least 60 separate occasions.

His mother, 27, pleaded guilty to causing or allowing his death and her boyfriend, 32, and their lodger Jason Owen, 36, were found guilty of the same charge. The will be sentenced in the spring

Opposition politicians urged Haringey to stand firm.

Robert Gorrie, leader of Haringey’s Liberal Democrat opposition, said local residents would be “rightly outraged” if the council agreed to a large pay-off.

“We have said from the outset that those responsible for this tragedy should be held to account and that there should be no rewards for failure,” he said.

“Sharon Shoesmith was responsible for the council service that failed Baby P. I hope the original council decision to terminate employment without payment of notice is upheld.”

Michael Gove, the Shadow Education Secretary, said: “Rather than compensating the individuals who presided over this tragedy, we should be pursuing those still being paid by the taxpayer who share responsibility for what went wrong.”

Cecilia Hitchen, deputy director of children’s services, and Clive Preece, head of children in need and safeguarding services remain suspended while an internal investigation is carried out.

Two social workers involved in the Baby P case, Gillie Christou and Maria Ward, have had their social work registration temporarily suspended.
The crux of her appeal is in bold below...

The first is that due process was not followed, that she was not presented properly with the accusations or given a chance to explain herself. However even if she wins on those grounds she still may not be entitled to compensation as the employer would argue that even if they had followed due process the outcome would have been the same,” Mr Fox told the Times.

“The second is that she was not guilty of gross misconduct, that it was someone else’s fault or or the facts were not as presented.”

He said the decision by Ed Balls, the Education Secretary, to say publicly that she should not be given a penny in compensation will not help the council.

“Unfortunately for the employer there appears to have been a direction from a politician, before an investigation by the employer took place,” he said.

I cannot understand how someone could, after such failing in the department they were in charge of, could then have the neck to then seek to appeal against dismissal!

This is not a call for any work tickets but i really cannot understand how this society now seems to reward failure. Am i just plain thick or just too old fashioned in my views?
 
#4
They wont pay out ,With public opinion regarding the circumstances regarding this little boy there will be a public outcry .
 
#5
I disagree with the view that it's a cult of rewarding failure. I think the root cause is targetitis and the penetration of Britains modern business ethos into the public sector.

You see it in boardrooms the length and breadth of the country: so long as someone ticked all the right boxes they're regarded as being successful, regardless of what the actual real-life outcome was.
 
#6
lashes said:
They wont pay out ,With public opinion regarding the circumstances regarding this little boy there will be a public outcry .

Fuck off, Chubb you pointless boil.

Your views and opinions are as valid and as useful as a copy of the Radio Times dated 'September 1983'.
 
#7
The-Lord-Flasheart said:
lashes said:
They wont pay out ,With public opinion regarding the circumstances regarding this little boy there will be a public outcry .

Fuck off, Chubb you pointless boil.

Your views and opinions are as valid and as useful as a copy of the Radio Times dated 'September 1983'.
Took about 2mins to get a reply :D
 
#8
Really grown up that TLF................!!!!!!!!!!!

Actually, I support the view that there is unlikely to be a "payout". What is more likely is the public outcry followed by an out of court settlement.

The bottom line is that Ms Shoesmith has the rest of her life to remember one little boy who she failed............a significant punishment I think??
 
#9
I hope they stand up and defend this case, as it is right and proper that she was dismissed. It shows the naievite (sp?) of Ed Balls by announcing and pre deciding the outcome of a disciplinary process.

She ran a department that was not up to the task and a child died as a result (again). She takes the pay, she gets the Job Title for her CV and with it the responsibility. I dont know how she has the nerve to challenge the decision to dismiss her.
 
#10
top_soldier said:
Really grown up that TLF................!!!!!!!!!!!

Actually, I support the view that there is unlikely to be a "payout". What is more likely is the public outcry followed by an out of court settlement.

She will still get a cast iron pension.

The bottom line is that Ms Shoesmith has the rest of her life to remember one little boy who she failed............a significant punishment I think??

Get real, these sort of people dont worry about things like that.
 
#12
top_soldier said:
Actually, I support the view that there is unlikely to be a "payout". What is more likely is the public outcry followed by an out of court settlement.
In court, out of court blah blah blah. Which ever way you view this the Irish bitch is going to get paid and land a top job somewhere. As for thinking about baby P for the rest of her life? She's not lost any sleep as yet. Her heads full of chasing the cash. All I say is don't buy her book.
 
#13
She does not accept there was a f. up so conscience does not come into it.

With the publicity, she was almost certainly never going to get another job in her line so an appeal is a must if she is to think of working at her 'speciality'
 
#14
OldRedCap said:
She does not accept there was a f. up so conscience does not come into it.

With the publicity, she was almost certainly never going to get another job in her line so an appeal is a must if she is to think of working at her 'speciality'
I certainly agree she seems to think she and the department she was in charge of did a fine job, and this is the thing that i can not seem to get my head round? When all the evidence seems otherwise.

Have those! In senior position's of power and responsibility not got the intelligence to work out that following a mahhosive cluster and then firing a few low ranks does not absolve them of responsibility?

I hope that she decides against appealing but i doubt it! When it is easy money from 'no win no fee parasite's?'
 
#15
I suspect that whatever we think, employment law is on her side, and the correct process was not followed. It's a pity she did not pay as much attention to detail when protecting the child !!
 
#16
The way the law works in the UK now she is fairly certain to win the case and have a large size pay out by way of compensation. Common sense and decency would indicate a sharp **** off would be more appropriate though
 
#17
following the precedents set in the world of the thrusting private sector :roll:
Feck up have the bank sold out from under you bonus of course :x
 
#18
She has to appeal, she has zero chance of working in that environment again, and probably will never command the princely fee of 100k again.

1.5 million worth of pension is on teh line too.

These types don´t think they are wrong.... EVER. You could (heaven forbid) dump baby Ps broken body on her desk, and show her step by step how she failed him (by default her department failed, thus she failed) and she would still come up with an excuse or reason why it was someone elses fault.

It is a sad fact that most CS or public workers, seeem to progress up the promotion ladder inspite of their clear disregard for responsibility. They like the RHIP bit, but not the With rank comes responsibility bit.
 
#19
marco_poloroid said:
They will bottle it and pay out. Watch my tracer.
Exactly what I thought when I first heard. And more to the point, this b1tch knows it too.

She knows she does'nt have to win the case to get a big payoff. :x
 

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